December, 2014: Of course the bark arrived before I did, but I made Bobby promise to wait for me to open it. It was holiday, and opening that box of bark was magical – the wings were ready to burst back into life! But how?
We went back and forth – should we re-create them exactly the way they were on some kind of armature or integrate them into an Earthworks sculpture so that they could be installed inside, bringing their natural “environment” with them? The answer was clear – do both. First, create a solid fiberglass armature for the bark, then allow the perfect branches that would house the Wings to “find” us. Then, put those together and suspend the Angel Wings within the branches, as if they had fallen there long ago, when the Angel who arrived here to walk among us shed his or her wings before beginning their work on Earth.
We headed into the woods, in pursuit of the perfect branches. Not ten minutes into our hike, there they were, lying in wait for the Wings. Just as the bark had seemed to assemble itself in San Diego on the earth, so the branches came together in perfect composition. I have this theory when it comes to sculpting with branches. Just like couples in love, there are endless combinations of how they can unite – but only one that is infinitely more perfect than the rest. You play around until the exact twists, turns and curves “fall” exactly into each other. In a split second, it’s crystal clear that you’ve found the answer.
It felt amazing, and we couldn’t wait to bring what we’d created down to the Studio. We headed back to DreamStreet, where Bobby fired up the tractor, grabbing screws, the screw gun and the chain saw. Off we went to assemble the branch structure in it’s natural environment. We bounced up the hill on the tractor, and less than fifteen minutes later, Bobby had sawed off what we didn’t need and screwed together everything else. I said a silent “thank you” to the woods for their offering, and we headed back down the hill. Stay tuned for Sculpture Assembly!